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Old 03-01-2009, 05:03 PM   #1
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Amazon Insists on DRM for Mobipocket eBooks

Seems that Amazon is insisting that Mobipocket format eBooks have to be sold with DRM.

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As a reader who wants to own e-books for real, I’ve had reason aplenty to loathe DRM.

Now, as a first novelist, I have even more justification.

The e-bookers at Amazon insist that books in its Mobipocket format be distributed with DRM even when publishers object. And that’s hitting Twilight Times Books and me in the pocketbook.
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Mobi’s distribution arm apparently won’t do business with Twilight unless Scandals and other books appear with DRM. And guess who offers software for creating Mobi-DRMed e-books and potentially could perpetrate major gouges in the future? Talk about the risks of Standard Oil-style monopolies in the making. It’s Jeff Bezos, wittingly or not, vs. the small guys.

You can read the full article written by David Rothman at TeleRead... http://www.teleread.org/2009/03/01/a...ls/#more-17957
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Old 03-01-2009, 05:09 PM   #2
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That's it. I've had enough of Amazon. From the ridiculous geographic isolationism of the Swindle, to this absolutely disgraceful insistence on DRM when a small publisher doesn't want it, they do nothing but annoy and disturb me.
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Old 03-01-2009, 05:21 PM   #3
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Why can you not just create a MobiPocket book using MobiPocket Creator or other tools and let Amazon sell it? Why involve "Mobi's distribution arm" at all?
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Old 03-01-2009, 05:25 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by tompe View Post
Why can you not just create a MobiPocket book using MobiPocket Creator or other tools and let Amazon sell it? Why involve "Mobi's distribution arm" at all?
I'd assume it's all part of the scheme to keep the Swindle locked down and exclusive.
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Old 03-01-2009, 05:28 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Moejoe View Post
That's it. I've had enough of Amazon. From the ridiculous geographic isolationism of the Swindle, to this absolutely disgraceful insistence on DRM when a small publisher doesn't want it, they do nothing but annoy and disturb me.
Would you be interested in purchasing a Kindle if it were available in your area?
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Old 03-01-2009, 05:28 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by tompe View Post
Why can you not just create a MobiPocket book using MobiPocket Creator or other tools and let Amazon sell it? Why involve "Mobi's distribution arm" at all?
From what it says, Amazon won't sell Mobi books unless they're DRM'd.
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Old 03-01-2009, 05:32 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by daffy4u View Post
Would you be interested in purchasing a Kindle if it were available in your area?

Kindle was my first stop on the journey of e-reading, until I actually looked into them. Being a UK citizen I'm denied access, but maybe that's no bad thing, as I've come to view them as a ridiculously backward-looking device. No ePub support, no geographical support, DRM'd to the hilt. And the terms of service, well, let's just say they can pull the plug at any time, for any reason, and you'll be left with nothing.

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Your rights under this Agreement will automatically terminate without notice from Amazon if you fail to comply with any term of this Agreement. In case of such termination, you must cease all use of the Software and Amazon may immediately revoke your access to the Service or to Digital Content without notice to you and without refund of any fees.
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Old 03-01-2009, 05:37 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moejoe View Post
Kindle was my first stop on the journey of e-reading, until I actually looked into them. Being a UK citizen I'm denied access, but maybe that's no bad thing, as I've come to view them as a ridiculously backward-looking device. No ePub support, no geographical support, DRM'd to the hilt. And the terms of service, well, let's just say they can pull the plug at any time, for any reason, and you'll be left with nothing.
Since I'm not big on re-reading, that's not much of a concern to me. For those books I do want to keep, they are backed up and I know what to do to revive them.

It would be interesting for me to see all the energy spent on being mad at Amazon channeled into creating some competition that works for the people who don't like Amazon. I don't know if that means working the publishers or picking a company like Fictionwise or BooksonBorad and helping them grow.
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Old 03-01-2009, 05:41 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moejoe View Post
Kindle was my first stop on the journey of e-reading, until I actually looked into them. Being a UK citizen I'm denied access, but maybe that's no bad thing, as I've come to view them as a ridiculously backward-looking device. No ePub support, no geographical support, DRM'd to the hilt. And the terms of service, well, let's just say they can pull the plug at any time, for any reason, and you'll be left with nothing.
well, you are in the UK, and its a US Device, atleast for now, so any bias based on Region can be thrown out.

Epub Support is useless, Epub can be converted into any format, that is why its Epub.

the Amazon Ebook Store is the Largest and Cheapest around, DRM doesnt come into play for the avearge user.

a Sony Device is more, "locked down" than the kindle is.
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Old 03-01-2009, 05:44 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daffy4u View Post
Since I'm not big on re-reading, that's not much of a concern to me. For those books I do want to keep, they are backed up and I know what to do to revive them.

It would be interesting for me to see all the energy spent on being mad at Amazon channeled into creating some competition that works for the people who don't like Amazon. I don't know if that means working the publishers or picking a company like Fictionwise or BooksonBorad and helping them grow.

i think maybe the first step, as a customer, is to insist that Amazon remove the DRM and provide support for the ePub standard before you'll buy anything from them. Being locked into a ridiculous contract that could see your whole library go up in a digital poof of smoke doesn't seem all that sensible to me. Then again, I couldn't agree to that if I wanted to, as Amazon have decided that we in Europe can't have their device.
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Old 03-01-2009, 05:48 PM   #11
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well, you are in the UK, and its a US Device, atleast for now, so any bias based on Region can be thrown out.

Epub Support is useless, Epub can be converted into any format, that is why its Epub.

the Amazon Ebook Store is the Largest and Cheapest around, DRM doesnt come into play for the avearge user.

a Sony Device is more, "locked down" than the kindle is.
So what you're saying is that I should just accept DRM because it doesn't come into play for the average user? Why would I do that? I don't want DRM on anything I purchase and I won't accept it. Not on music, films or anything else.

Further to that point, are you really insisting that because ePub can be converted to other formats it shouldn't be adopted? That makes no sense at all. It's the standard, it's easy to create, it's flexible and it looks good, there's plenty of reasons it should be adopted.

As to the Sony, I don't own one, I'm waiting to buy a device that isn't encumbered with lock-ins to particular stores or needs DRM to be in any way useable.
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Old 03-01-2009, 05:49 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moejoe View Post
i think maybe the first step, as a customer, is to insist that Amazon remove the DRM and provide support for the ePub standard before you'll buy anything from them. Being locked into a ridiculous contract that could see your whole library go up in a digital poof of smoke doesn't seem all that sensible to me. Then again, I couldn't agree to that if I wanted to, as Amazon have decided that we in Europe can't have their device.
You're still thinking in terms of trying to bend Amazon to your will, help create what you need and want. Think outside the box beyond Amazon. Act as if they don't exist.
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Old 03-01-2009, 05:52 PM   #13
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You're still thinking in terms of trying to bend Amazon to your will, help create what you need and want. Think outside the box beyond Amazon. Act as if they don't exist.
That makes no sense to me. I can't act as if they don't exist, they do, and in a big way. If we don't shout or make our voices heard, digital lockdown, culture trapped by corporations will remain the norm. As to what I do to combat this, I'm part of a few organisations that actively campaign against DRM, I'll be offering my writing in DRM, ePub standard and I buy DRM-free or don't buy at all.

Campaigining for standards adoption shouldn't really be a bone of contention. It benefits everyone.
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Old 03-01-2009, 06:01 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Moejoe View Post
That makes no sense to me. I can't act as if they don't exist, they do, and in a big way. If we don't shout or make our voices heard, digital lockdown, culture trapped by corporations will remain the norm. As to what I do to combat this, I'm part of a few organisations that actively campaign against DRM, I'll be offering my writing in DRM, ePub standard and I buy DRM-free or don't buy at all.

Campaigining for standards adoption shouldn't really be a bone of contention. It benefits everyone.
I was just trying to expand your thinking but from your statement you are taking concrete steps to get what you want outside of Amazon which I think is a good thing.

Could the fact that Amazon was selling DRM free music part of the push that was necessary for Apple to go DRM free as well? It may take competition from an outside source to get Amazon to change it's stance (or maybe just time).
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Old 03-01-2009, 06:05 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by daffy4u View Post
I was just trying to expand your thinking but from your statement you are taking concrete steps to get what you want outside of Amazon which I think is a good thing.

Could the fact that Amazon was selling DRM free music part of the push that was necessary for Apple to go DRM free as well? It may take competition from an outside source to get Amazon to change it's stance (or maybe just time).

I'd say it was probably part of the mix, but I've heard that iTunes wanted to go DRM-free early on too.

Time and pressure are definitley important if we, as consumers, want to keep our rights when it comes to digital products. We accept far too much restriction, I think, and don't complain enough. I'd hope that active resistance would change Amazon's mind and when they do they'd be in a position to be the leaders in a e-reading revolution. As it stands there are too many downsides for me when it comes to Amazon and the decisions they take.
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